A decade or two ago, it wouldn’t have mattered what your views are politically and socially. Consumers go about their own lives and advocacy without demanding the same from the businesses that they support. Over the years, they’ve realized that businesses are making money off them, and they need to demand that they take a stand on certain important issues. We have seen this in the past year, wherein people troop to business locations, demanding that business owners take a stand on a variety of issues—the Black Lives Matter movement, climate change, political injustice, and so much more.
So where does that leave a small business such as yours? You are afraid to alienate customers, so you don’t really want to be polarizing. However, you know how important social responsibility is, and you want to use your voice for the good of the community. Taking a stand shouldn’t be polarizing at all. You can support causes that are dear to everyone’s hearts such as high school dropout rates, poverty, and the environment.
1. Build a Business Code of Ethics
More and more businesses are realizing the importance of taking care of the environment. This is why this is fast becoming part of an organization’s overall code of ethics. The code of ethics should reflect on your company’s core values, mission and vision, and personnel. Your employees should display the same values when they talk with clients and negotiate with suppliers.
2. Commit to Protect the Environment
Every business should do its part in protecting the environment. A simple policy of saving as much energy as possible at work will go a long way toward environmental sustainability. One of the best ways to do this is to invest in environmentally friendly choices in your building and operational processes. Making sure that your employees know about the steps you take to protect the environment will encourage them to do the same.
During winter, make sure to call for industrial insulation services so that the company can check if the pipes of your heaters are insulated enough to handle the cold. Well-insulated buildings are energy savers. Its employees can use the heating and cooler devices without the management worrying about the high electricity costs.
3. Talk to Your Suppliers
You cannot do this alone. To create an effective social responsibility program and policy for your business, you need the help of your suppliers. Ensure that your suppliers meet your business ethics, as well as meet the expectations of the programs. Before agreeing to sign the contract, ensure that you see eye-to-eye with the suppliers. It is no use to focus on your social and environmental policies if your suppliers don’t do the same. These kinds of advocacy are a work in progress.
4. Be Conscious About Giving Back
Where do you donate your money? What causes do you help? If you are concerned about climate change, you have to make sure that you put money where your mouth is. For example, you need to donate to causes that focus on environmental sustainability and protection. Get behind causes that are meaningful to your business. You can give back to the community by sponsoring events, planting trees, and lending your voice to environmental concerns.
You do not know the power of the voice of a small business owner until you use it. The idea is to make sure that they hear your message loud and clear. This will have a huge impact on the way your market perceives your organization.
5. Don’t Hoodwink the Public
Be fair and honest about your marketing message. Do not try to hoodwink the public with false marketing and advertising. Walk the talk. Make sure that you remain true to your campaigns. Do what your company says it will because the consequence is that the public will start to mistrust you. In every business, the most important thing is earning and keeping your customers’ trust. The moment you lose that, it will be hard to earn it again. So, be careful with the marketing message you want them to believe because you’ll have to stay true to that.
Now more than ever, businesses must do their part in building the community. They must work together with governments and other non-profit organizations in reaching out to the public with the hopes of addressing some of the most pressing issues in society. Whether it’s poverty, education, environment, social justice, and social media ethics, your voice is as only as powerful as when you make people hear it. You cannot deny your brand’s obligation to contribute to the betterment of everyone.